Caught on camera: Local authorities investigating after cars are stolen across the region

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – “I mean if there’s no punishment for the crime, what’s going to stop them from keep doing it? They’re not! They’re going to just keep doing it. It’s crazy. It’s out of control,” Redline Transmission owner Joe Defilppo said.

You hear about it almost every day. Another car was stolen in our community. It’s clear to see, there’s been an uptick in car thefts across the region.

Overnight on Tuesday, police told us nearly a dozen cars were stolen around Rochester. Investigators said one driver was carjacked.

In Monroe County this month alone, there have been a total of 38 reported cars taken from various car shops.

“If you’re going to steal a car, why would you take from of transmission shop?” Deflippo said. You got a half-and-half shot it’s not going to move once you get in it.”

Deflippo said for the first time in 43 years, his business was targeted by thieves.

“I woke up, I looked at the camera and I saw there was motion in there,” Deflippo said. “I turned it on and you see the kids who were running through here, and then I looked in the cameras on the outside, and they’re pulling away in vehicles.”

Security video captured the suspects after they broke the window to get inside and steal keys and then cars from the parking lot.

Rochester police said three cars were stolen overnight from Redline Transmission. One was found abandoned and another was involved in a crash on Roth Street with another stolen car.

Another six cars were stolen after a break-in overnight at A-1 Auto Repair on North Goodman Street.

The 10th car was taken after a man was carjacked while sitting in his car on East Main Street, assaulted, and hit with the car as the suspect drove off.

“We are seeing an uptick in stolen vehicles this year up from last year,” MCSO Deputy Brendan Hurley said.

The thefts are not only happening in the city.

Two weeks ago, Gates Police reported 17 cars stolen from Hertz Rental Car on Ajax Road.

A week ago, The Monroe County Sheriff’s Department reported that five young people, including a 12-year-old were arrested while stealing cars from CarMax in Henrietta.

Deputy Brendan Hurley said this year, there’s been around 287 stolen vehicles to date.

“It’s dangerous because there are consequences for those,” Hurley said. “There are legal consequences if you’re driving a car, you don’t know how to drive, and it’s a dangerous instrument. It can kill you. It can kill other people, or cause serious physical injury.”

Joe said that while this is an interruption and they had to spend the day cleaning up and making new car keys, there’s a bigger problem.

“Something’s wrong,” Deflippo said. “Something’s wrong with our system because I’m talking to the police officers and they’re arresting these guys and then they’re letting them go the next day, and then they’re arresting them again and they’re giving an appearance then they’re letting them go again.”

Rochester police are still investigating to identify the suspects and figure out if all of these incidents are connected. At last check, out of the 10 stolen cars, two have been recovered.

As for the man carjacked, police said he was taken to Strong Hospital and is expected to be ok.